Golden Year Seventeen


–REFERENCE: In Wonder Woman #281 Part 2. Batman (as both the Dark Knight and separately as Bruce Wayne) befriends GCPD Sergeant Miles Clancy O’Hara.

–NOTE: Referenced in The Brave and The Bold #197 and Superman Family #211 Part 2. Two-Face escapes jail, recovers his sanity, surrenders to the law, and undergoes facial reconstructive surgery for the second time. Presumably, Harvey Kent will finish out a highly-shortened sentence and make a full recovery thereafter.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #93 Part 2. Bruce’s distant cousin Van has a baby boy with his wife Jane Wayne. Bruce meets both Jane and the baby, who is named Vanderveer “Van” Wayne Jr. Note that we never actually learn the baby’s name as it is only called by its nickname “Junior.” But if later Earth-1 stories bear any true reflection to current Earth-2 stories, we can assume that Jane is a distant cousin that married into the Wayne family, meaning her husband is Bruce’s actual (unnamed) cousin. If Bruce’s actual cousin has a son that is a junior, presumably they share the same name. Thus, retroactively, we can assume that Bruce’s actual cousin is named Vanderveer “Van” Wanye Sr.

Detective Comics #216

Detective Comics #216 by Edmond Hamilton, Dick Sprang, & Charles Paris (1955)

–Detective Comics #216
Batman and Robin chase after some crooks that use professional make-up disguises to mask who they really are. At a hospital benefit ball, Bruce doesn’t have time to switch into his Batman costume when the crooks strike, but he acts anyway, saving lives but injuring his arm. Later, Batman learns that make-up artist Martin Vair is working for the bad guys. However, he can’t go into action because Vicki Vale knows his wing is busted. Who ya gonna call? Brane Taylor![1] Batman uses the 31st century super-radio to contact the Batman of the future in the year 3055. Brane soon arrives in his timesphere and heads out to bust some heads with Robin. However, when Brane meets Vicki Vale, he goes all Zapp Brannigan, showing off his macho ladies’ man personality. Vicki begins to suspect that he is an impostor. While the heroes chase the villains, Vicki tags along. Robin does all he can from distracting her while Brane, against the Boy Wonder’s wishes, uses future technology, such as a jet pack, truth vapor spray, and an invisibility refractor. Eventually, Brane and Robin bust the baddies, but Vicki is still suspicious, especially since Robin did all the detective work during the case. Not only is Brane a subpar detective, he is noticeably taller than Batman! Before Vicki can figure it out, the real 20th century Batman shows up (healed thanks to a 31st century scientific massage technique) and dispels her thoughts, stating that he was wearing special lift boots. Brane eagerly returns to 3055.

–Batman #90 Part 3 Intro
Little person circus acrobat Midge Merrill helps Batman and Robin take down some of Tapper Nolan‘s gang at a baseball bat factory. Batman and Robin don’t see their helper because they are tied up, but Merrill leaves them a note, calling himself Batboy. Batboy will spend the next month waging war against Nolan’s gang (as revenge for Nolan having killed his friend). Batboy designs a baseball themed superhero costume, moves into a Batcave-like “Dugout” HQ, and builds various baseball themed weapons.

–REFERENCE: In The Brave and The Bold #197 and Superman Family #211 Part 2. Dick begins attending college in Gotham. Although he will probably be busy with classes, Dick will still regularly patrol and assist Batman with cases. Dick will also still live at Wayne Manor.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #89 Part 3. Batman and Robin fight Raven and his Rotor Robbers. These guys wear personal helicopter suits that allow them to commit high-flying acts of crime.

–Batman #89 Part 1
When newfound historical documentation reveals that Commissioner Gordon’s great-grandfather Captain John Gordon was a notorious criminal that robbed towns up and down the Mississippi River, Commissioner Gordon becomes embroiled in scandal that could ruin his career. It’s off to Carter Nichols for Bruce and Dick. Nichols puts them in his time-machine and uses his hypnotic metapowers to send Bruce and Dick to the South, 1854. There, Batman and Robin join Captain Gordon’s traveling steamboat vaudeville show. After several days on the tour, Batman and Robin prove Captain Gordon’s innocence at a New Orleans Mardi Gras celebration. Back in 1955, Batman and Robin unearth a 19th century newspaper that proves the captain’s innocence to the modern world.

Batman #89 Part 2

Batman #89 Part 2 by Sheldon Moldoff & Charles Paris (1955)

–Batman #89 Part 2
Washed up mob boss Vince Varden decides to up his game by purchasing the “Seven Wonders of the Underworld,” criminal inventions used across the globe for devious deeds. Varden unleashes the weapons upon Gotham one-by-one. First, Batman is bested by the Second Story Burglar Machine, a tank with Doctor Octopus arms that can climb up walls. After that, Varden uses the Magnetic Mobster, a giant magnet on wheels that can snatch safes right out of walls. Varden’s men also spray Batman with one of the “Wonders,” a special gas that deteriorates silk, which ruins their Batropes. Using the Phantom Getaway Car, which can transform into practically any vehicle, the crooks escape. Back at their hideout, Varden uses the Hydraulic Jimmy to easily gain access to the safe’s contents. Varden celebrates and plans to use the Mechanical Forger, a device that can fake any signature, for a new plan. But before he can, Batman and Robin show up and take him down using his own Second Story Burglar Machine and a vacuum weapon known as The Vacuum Thief. Afterward, Batman and Robin put all seven “Wonders of the Underworld” into the Hall of Trophies.

Batman #89 Part 3

Batman #89 Part 3 by Bill Finger, Sheldon Moldoff, & Stan Kaye (1955)

–Batman #89 Part 3
Bruce’s elderly Aunt Agatha shows up out of the blue to visit him and plans to stay for at least a week! When Agatha parks herself in front of the secret grandfather clock entrance to the Batcave, Batman and Robin must sneak out through the kitchen. However, Agatha spots them! Luckily, Agatha thinks that they are simply attending a costume party. In the city, Batman and Robin go toe-to-toe with Raven and his Rotor Robbers but are bested by the high flying criminals. The next day, Bruce and Dick take Agatha sight-seeing and locate the Rotor Robbers’ hideout. At night, Batman and Robin go after the Rotor Robbers only to get netted and captured. All of a sudden, Agatha busts into the room dressed up as Joker! She casually removes Batman’s mask and addresses him as Bruce, believing to be joining them at a highly-publicized annual Gotham costume party! Agatha is one tough broad, though, and when she learns that the Rotor Robbers are bad dudes, she holds them up with a pair of pistols. Agatha then orders Bruce to man-up and take down Raven, which he does. Later, Bruce, Dick, and Agatha attend the real masquerade festival. At the end of the week, Agatha leaves town, still not knowing that her nephew is actually Batman.

–Detective Comics #217
GCPD janitor Barney Barrows gets endowed with Hector Hammond-like brain powers (and Hector Hammond-like head shape) after a freak radiation accident involving an x-ray machine. Barrows uses his new intellect to figure out who Batman and Robin are and then vows to fight crime more effectively than they can. Barrows shows up at Wayne Manor and takes over the “Case of the Metals Mob” from a shocked Batman and Robin. Our heroes must comply with Barrows or else he will reveal their secret IDs to the public. Barrows begins building bizarre radar tracking machines and torture devices in the Batcave while sending Batman out to bring in members of the Metals Mob. Eventually, Barrows (with Robin) hits the streets himself in an attempt to use lethal force against the Metals Mob. This prompts Batman to rescue the remaining Metals Mobsters from execution. After the Metals Mob is brought down, Barrows’ head shrinks down to size and he passes out. As Batman and Robin had learned from a scientific encyclopedia, Barrows’ condition has been documented before and is temporary. Those with the condition lose all memory of their time being super-smart after they regain consciousness. Back on the job at GCPD, Barrows now gets to wear an official GCPD officer’s uniform instead of his janitor greys.

–Batman #90 Part 1
When a scientist, Dr. Driscoll, loses a package containing deadly experimental germs that could cause an epidemic across Gotham if released and then gets amnesia and can’t remember where the germs are, Batman is on the case. When Batman realizes that Driscoll once tested the germs on three convicts in exchange for full pardons, the Dark Knight comes up with the inane idea that if Driscoll sees the three ex-cons then he will recall where the germ package is. The first ex-con is Tom Bailey, who has just been framed for murder. Batman busts the real crook, exonerating Bailey. Next is Brad Carter, but he refuses to help. After that is Paul Wade, who is on the run from the law with two evil dudes. When Batman and Robin converge on the trio, Wade turns on his crooked pals and helps Batman bring them down. Carter then changes his mind and all three ex-cons meet with Driscoll, who remembers where the germs are. Thus, the day is saved.

–Batman #90 Part 2
Gangsters steal a new invention called the Illus-O-Ray, which emits a beam that causes things to appear in a vertigo-inducing MC Escher/Salvador Dali-esque manner. These thugs use the Illus-O-Ray to best Batman and Robin a couple times. Eventually, Batman realizes that they can use the Batmobile’s radar to see correctly. Getting close, Batman is able to shut his eyes to avoid nausea long enough to take down the bad guys.

batman #90 Part 3 Conclusion

Batman #90 Part 3 by Sheldon Moldoff & Stan Kaye (1955)

–Batman #90 Part 3 Conclusion
With Batman away on unspecified business in Washington, Robin guards Gotham alone. (Note that the Caped Crusader technically does not make an appearance in the conclusion to Batman #90 Part 3.) When the baseball-themed Batboy (Midge Merrill) runs into trouble against Tapper Nolan’s gang, he flashes his Baseball Bat-Signal into the sky. Robin responds to the bizarre spotlight, meets Batboy, and chases off Tapper’s gang. Eventually, Robin and Batboy apprehend Nolan, delivering him to justice. Afterward, with his mission fulfilled, Batboy retires from crime-fighting and becomes an actual Major League Baseball batboy.

–REFERENCE: In World’s Finest Comics #75. Batman and Robin war against the Purple Mask Gang.

–World’s Finest Comics #75
Batman and Robin face-off against the Purple Mask Gang inside Gotham Research Laboratories. There, one of the purple bandana-wearing thugs tosses an experimental powder in Batman’s face causing Batman to fall and knock himself out. When he comes to, he has a cast on his leg. Superman and Robin tell Batman that he has a clean break and will have to be out of action for a while. While Batman sulks in the cave (refusing to even take his costume off), Superman and Robin work on systematically taking down the Purple Maskers. After the first easy roundup, Batman asks them to bring him a trophy for the Hall of Trophies: One of the bad guy’s wristwatches. After watching Superman and Robin beat more Purples on live TV and receiving his trophy, Batman asks them for another trophy: One of the baddies’ shoes. After busting more Purps, the new Dynamic Duo brings a shoe back to Batman, who reveals the secret location of the Purple hideout based upon an examination of the dust on the watch and shoe. Superman and Robin go there and quickly bring down the leaders of the gang. Back at the Batcave, Superman removes Batman’s cast and reveals that he never broke his leg in the first place! Batman had inhaled the experimental powder, which would have killed him if he remained active. Thus, the only surefire way to get Bruce to rest for a few days was to put him in a cast.

–REFERENCE: In World’ Finest Comics #75 and Detective Comics #224. Batman muses about getting rid of some of his trophies. At this point, the Hall of Trophies resembles a hoarding nightmare. We can assume that Batman decides to trim the fat and jettisons at least a thousand trophies, especially since, by this year’s Detective Comics #224, the Hall of Trophies will be down to a svelte 781 catalogued items. Thus, it’s likely that Batman now lowers his collection from around 2000 items down to roughly 775.

Batman #91 Part 2

Batman #91 Part 2 by Sheldon Moldoff & Charles Paris (1955)

–Batman #91 Part 2
Batman and Robin are put-off and surprised when Mayor Dent hires a publicity agent named Whalen to represent them. Overnight, a massive money-backed ad campaign (paid for by an anonymous donor) brings a barrage of Batman themed parades, posters, contests, giveaways, and memorabilia into Gotham, the likes of which has never been seen before. Our heroes begin to be suspicious of both Whalen and the anonymous donor when the publicity begins to interfere with their crime-fighting. First, a parade proves to be an obstacle for Batman and Robin. Then, the Dynamic Duo misses the Bat-Signal’s call due to the fact that everyone is flashing mini Bat-Signal flashlights into the night sky. Then, Batman has problems when other fake Batmobiles and mini Batplane toys get in his way. When a new “Napoleon of Crime” declares himself as the top dog in Gotham, Batman and Whalen decide to flush him out at the gathering of the Heroes Club, a masquerade group that honors history’s heroes by dressing up as them. (Batman is to be honored at this year’s annual ball.) Sure enough, Napoleon (AKA crook Blinky Grosset) shows up and gets busted. Afterward, Whalen terminates his contract with the city, claiming that Batman is front page news every day so he really doesn’t need anymore publicity.

–Batman #91 Part 3
While exploring in Peru, archeologist Guy Hawtree discovers a lost ancient Incan pyramid with a giant gold disc atop it. Hawtree returns to his Gotham HQ at the Exploration Club (formerly known as the Explorers Club) and tells his friends Blanning and Merton about his find, but doesn’t say where the place is exactly located for fear of interlopers. A few days later, Batman is called to the Exploration Club when African army ants are stolen and released in a nearby park. The ants provide a perfect distraction for a mystery criminal to steal a bunch of South American maps. After a trip to the Gotham Map Company, Batman learns from a cartographer that Hawtree marked the location of the Incan find on a colossal globe atop the World Building, which is across the street from the Exploration Club. Batman and Robin converge on the World Building only to find a masked man scaling the sphere. By the time Batman and Robin get on the globe, the masked man has fled with the piece of the Hawtree-marked map. Luckily, while Batman was at the Exploration Club earlier, he had snapped some photographs of Hawtree’s office, including a shot out the window. Batman enlarges the photo and learns Hawtree’s Peruvian locale. Down in Peru, Batman saves Hawtree’s life and busts the mystery villain, Blanning.

–REFERENCE: In The Brave and The Bold #197. Joker escapes from jail, but is quickly sent back by Batman.

–REFERENCE: In Detective Comics #244. Batman and Robin debut the Bomb Batarang during a case against notorious crook Whitey Mantell. Afterward, the Bomb Batarang goes onto the Batarang board in the Hall of Trophies.

–FLASHBACK: From Detective Comics #221. Batman and Robin fight Captain Shark and his waterfront pirates. Shark winds up putting Batman and Robin into what appears to be a watery grave, but the Dynamic Duo survives.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #109 Part 3. Early May. Batman and Robin fight Verne Hainey‘s gang, but Hainey escapes.

–REFERENCE: In Detective Comics #227 in Batman #102 Part 3. Batman disguises himself as a Native American to solve “The Mystery of the Lost Tribal Treaties.” Batman keeps both a Native American bison horn feather headdress and a crossbow on display in a case in the Hall of Trophies following this undoubtedly racist mission.

B&B 200

The Brave and The Bold #200 by Mike W Barr, Dave Gibbons, Gary Martin, & Adrienne Roy (1983)

–The Brave and The Bold #200
The devilish super-villain known as Brimstone (Nicholas Lucien) returns to best Batman and Robin in a series of evil contests, which include stereotypical clue-giving and over-the-top heists. During Brimstone’s schemes, the villain manages to capture Robin on two separate occasions. After escaping from his own death trap and completing the second rescue of the Boy Wonder, Batman punches Brimstone, who hits his head on the sharp edge of a nearby brazier, causing him to slip into unconsciousness. The Dynamic Duo drop the kayoed Brimstone off with Warden Craddock at the State Prison. Despite receiving professional medical attention, Brimstone has suffered extremely severe head trauma. As a result of his cephalic injury, Brimstone never wakes up—he’ll remain in a coma for the next twenty-eight years!

–REFERENCE: In The Brave and The Bold #197. Penguin is paroled again (sigh) and quickly returned to the slammer by Batman for his typical crimes.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman #95 Part 3. Batman and Robin swing into action at an exploding fireworks factory.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #93 Part 2. Batman and Robin defeat the Electric Mobsters, who use a giant artificial lightning generator against the Dynamic Duo. After wrapping the case, Batman keeps the generator as a trophy.

–Detective Comics #219
Bruce and Dick notice that a bunch of crooks are headed to the Ancient Auto Society’s annual gathering in the Gotham suburb of Millville. The next day, Bruce purchases two old-time autos, a 1909 Winton and a 1905 Marmon. Bruce publicly drives the Winton to the convention while Dick secretly drives the Marmon (souped up as the “ancient Batmobile”) to a rented barn hideout just outside of Millville. Over the course of a few days, Bruce and Dick enter the Winton into several races, shows, and competitions and witness various forced wrecks and robberies. Batman and Robin enter the Marmon into the final race and wind up busting every crook in Millville. The baddies were there to find a forty-year-old platinum cache hidden in the form of an antique car engine.


Batman #96 Part 2

Batman #96 Part 2 by Bill Finger, Sheldon Moldoff, & Charles Paris (1955)

–Batman #96 Part 2
Since this story violates a retcon by including a playboy reference after Bruce’s engagement to Selina, it has been rendered non-canon. However, since this story occurs “many years after Bruce graduated from Gotham College” it cannot be canon on the Silver Age timeline either. Therefore, it must go here, before Bruce’s engagement. Here’s the synopsis. Bruce is invited to go on a three-day cruise aboard a private yacht with his friends from college. Once at sea, however, things turn ugly as Bruce’s jealous rival Joe Danton reveals that he has been diagnosed with a fatal heart condition and that he means to kill his old pals. (During college, Bruce and Danton were rivals on the fencing, baseball, football, and wrestling teams—naturally, Bruce always won out and Danton never got over it.) Bruce secretly switches into his Batman togs to deactivate Danton’s sea mines, and he kills a shark to boot. Back aboard the ship, Danton—having recognized Batman to be Bruce thanks to a scar on his wrist—has his fatal heart attack. But instead of exposing Batman, he chooses not to, having been inspired by the Dark Knight’s selfless heroics.

–REFERENCE: In Detective Comics #228. Batman and Robin recover the once again stolen Vandorf necklace (it was previously stolen six years ago), prevent a Rembrandt from being stolen from the museum, and grab a safe-cracker at the Braddon Mansion.

–Detective Comics #228
Since this story violates a retcon by ignoring Bruce’s engagement/marriage to Selina, it has been rendered non-canon. However, since this story occurs “a few years” after the arrest of Spade Stinson, it cannot be canon on the Silver Age timeline either. Therefore, it must go here, before Bruce’s engagement. Here’s the synopsis. Batman gets knocked-out by some crooks and is nursed back to health by a doctor that happens to be on the scene. The doc prescribes Batman some medication and sends him home. During the next two nights Bruce has nightmares about robbing the Vandorf necklace and stealing a Rembrandt from the museum. Bruce is shocked to learn that someone dressed as Batman committed those crimes during the nights he had those dreams. Nevertheless, Batman shrugs it off and makes some public appearances in Gotham. Back at home, Robin finds the Rembrant and the Vandorf necklace hidden in the Batcave! That night, Robin trails Batman, who, sure enough, wakes up in a trance-like state and attempts another crime. Robin knocks-out the zombie crook Batman and takes him straight to the doctor in the morning. There, Batman realizes that the doc is actually an escaped Spade Stinson in disguise and takes him down. The medicine was, of course, a rare Amazonian drug designed to cause a Jekyll and Hyde effect.

Detective Comics #232

Detective Comics #232 by Dick Sprang & Charles Paris (1956)

–Detective Comics #232
Since this story violates a retcon by making a playboy reference after Bruce’s engagement/marriage to Selina, it has been rendered non-canon. However, since this story’s plot revolves heavily around a motion picture studio that makes a Batman flick annually and has done so for years, it must take place here. This tale also makes reference to Bart Davis’ arrest a “few years ago,” placing it here as well. Onto the synopsis. For publicity, the Excelsior Studios decides to let Batman and Robin hand-pick the actors that will play them in their new Batman feature. Unfortunately, Batman chooses a disguised Bart Davis, who has a devious plan to mimic Batman like he once did before. The next day, the Dynamic Duo busts veteran hijacker Beaver Gaff only to get excoriated by Commissioner Gordon for wasting their time with the movie. A day later, Davis, dressed as Batman, begins robbing crooks but keeps the loot for himself. At the abandoned Whaling Museum, Batman fights “Batman,” at one point donning a monkey suit to protect his secret ID, and puts him behind bars, simultaneously solving a weeks old GCPD robbery case. Afterward, Batman agrees to play himself in the new Batman film, in which writers have ironically penned-in Bruce Wayne as the Dark Knight’s secret ID. (Of course, we never see Batman act in the movie. So for the sake of our very tightly compressed timeline and Batman’s busy schedule, we must assume he backs out).

B&B 197 FB

The Brave and The Bold #197 by Alan Brennert, Joe Staton, George Freeman, & Adrienne Roy (1983)

–FLASHBACK: From The Brave and The Bold #197. Late May 1955—Batman mentions that the year isn’t yet halfway over. (Batman also mentions that he’s been fighting crime for fifteen years, but that’s wrong—it’s been sixteen.) Batman meets with Commissioner Gordon and learns that Scarecrow has been paroled (after serving fourteen years in prison) and is back to his evil ways. But Bruce can’t worry about that now. He dons a tux and attends the wedding of his ex-girlfriend Linda Page. We haven’t seen Linda in ten years! At the wedding, Scarecrow strikes, dosing the attendees with some newly invented Fear Gas. Batwoman and Robin show up to help amidst the chaos, but Batman is so messed-up on Fear Gas, he can’t even see them. Panicked, Batman visits Selina Kyle in prison and asks her to help him! Before long, Batwoman and Catwoman hit the streets—Batman gets special permission for her temporary release. The Bat and the Cat then chase down Scarecrow to Gotham Unversity where he makes both of them run through a haze of terror. Catwoman finally admits to Batman that she lied about having amnesia. Batman is shocked, but respects her for telling the truth. Eventually, Batman punches out Scarecrow into unconsciousness. Still under the lingering effects of the Fear Gas, Batman unmasks and reveals his undying love for Catwoman. The Bat and the Cat embrace in a tender kiss. We can assume this kiss leads to something a bit more raunchy because by the end of the night Bruce and Selina are engaged to be married! We can also assume that Selina’s sentence is reduced and she is offered parole, which will allow for her release in a couple months.

–REFERENCE: In The Brave and The Bold #182. Batman immediately changes his attitude towards Batwoman now that he is engaged to Selina, becoming cooler and more distant. Batwoman is saddened but gets the hint, assuming correctly that Batman’s alter ego has found a new lady love. Kathy vows never to become Batwoman again and will avoid contact with Batman going forward, eventually marrying someone and starting a family of her own.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #109 Part 3. Batman and Robin fight Verne Hainey’s gang for a second time, but Hainey escapes again.

–Detective Comics #220
In the year 1255, famed thinker Roger Bacon peruses over ancient texts that supposedly document strange travelers (Batman and Robin) from the future intervening in events of the past. Bacon also happens to have developed the exact metahuman time-projection powers that Carter Nichols has, except Bacon’s powers are immensely greater—he doesn’t require the assistance of a time-machine to send people through time. Wanting to find out more about the mystery time-travelers, Bacon dresses up his students Marcus Tiller and Guy Tiller as Batman and Robin (based upon crude illustrations) and sends them randomly to the year 1955 (now). There, the confused Tiller Boys are mistaken for the real Batman and Robin and are sent to take on the Speedboat Bandits by Commissioner Gordon. The real Batman and Robin trail after and watch as the medieval versions of themselves fight a losing battle against the Speedboat Bandits. Back at the Batcave, Batman and Robin tell their astonished counterparts all about the modern world before heading back out to fight the Speedboat Bandits. When the Tiller Boys think that the Dynamic Duo is in trouble, they join the melee off the shores of West Bay outside of Gotham. Using medieval weaponry, Batman, Batman, Robin, and Robin defeat the crooks. The Tiller Boys then fade back to 1255.

–Batman #92 Part 2
Cal Tremont moves into the mansion on the property adjacent to Wayne Manor and is immediately suspected of a rash of recent robberies in the neighborhood. Could it be Tremont? Or could it be his weird shady gardener that we also are introduced to on the first page? It’s the gardener. The end.

batman #92 Part 3 Ace the Bat-Hound

Batman #92 Part 3 by Bill Finger, Sheldon Moldoff, & Stan Kaye (1955)

–Batman #92 Part 3
Batman and Robin save a drowning German Shepherd and put out a “lost dog” ad in the newspaper (as Bruce). When the dog runs after the Dynamic Duo when they respond to the Bat-Signal, Robin puts a little mask on the pup and the canine helps them bust some crooks. Later, the dog’s owner John Wilker, calls in, claiming him and revealing his name, “Ace.” Thus, Ace the Bat-Hound is born! When Bruce goes to return Ace to Wilker, they find his home ransacked and evidence that he’s been abducted. Ace helps the Dynamic Duo solve a missing child case before eventually leading them to his owner, who has been forced to use his expertise as a printer to help some crooks print counterfeit cash. Batman and Robin are captured but soon rescued by Ace. The heroes and their dog then bust the crooks. Afterward, Batman returns Ace to Wilker, who suspects that he must be Bruce Wayne. However, the Dark Knight produces a photo of he and Ace posing next to Bruce. (Alfred is dressed as Batman in the pic in order to fool Wilker.) Wilker takes back Ace, but tells Batman that he can use the dog anytime he wants in the future. Bruce later adds a special glass display to the Hall of Trophies just for Ace and places a trophy from this first official criminal case in the display (as referenced in Batman #103 Part 3).

–FLASHBACK: From Batman #95 Part 3 and Detective Comics #234. Batman and Robin solve an underwater case and bust some crooks using the Batmarine.


–Detective Comics #221-222
Gotham’s newest crime lord, Paul King, captures the Dynamic Duo. While the flamboyant King chats it up with a distracting Boy Wonder, Batman calls the police for help. King puts the Dynamic Duo into a death trap room, but the room has already been rendered useless by the cops, allowing King to fall into the hands of the law quite easily.

Wealthy athletic Gothamite Ned Judson is recruited into the mysterious Brotherhood of Batmen—a bunch of dudes dressed up as Batman who claim that they all share the load of acting as Batman, taking shifts, but making it seem to the public that there is only one Dark Knight. They further explain that the leader of their group is Batman #1, who is the Batman that works with Robin. Ned is to initiated as the newest Batman in the group. What’s going on here? The Brotherhood is a bunch of crooks that wants to swindle Judson for all his money. Eventually, Batman #1 (Bruce) and Robin spot Judson and another Batman doppelganger. Learning of the criminals’ ruse, Batman #1 takes Judson under his wing and trains him in the art of crime-fighting. After a few days, Judson (still in his Batman costume and still thinking that the Brotherhood is real) aids Robin in busting some thieves. When Judson returns to the lair of the Brotherhood, the bad guys turn on him. The real Batman shows up and busts the whole gang. Afterward, Batman explains how Judson had been manipulated, but Judson was proud that he got to “play Batman” for even a little.

–FLASHBACK: From Detective Comics #224. Batman gets thrown into an armored car by two unnamed armored carjackers. The car is then submerged into Gotham Bay. Batman, of course, escapes and fights his would-be killers the next day.


–FLASHBACK: From DC Super-Stars #17. July 1955. Selina Kyle is released from prison and into the eagerly awaiting arms of her fiancé, Bruce Wayne.

–Superman Family #211 Part 2 Intro
July 1955. Batman flies to Metropolis to hand deliver an invitation to the nuptials of Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle—via Batarang through the window—to Clark and Lois.

–FLASHBACK: From Detective Comics #244. Batman and Robin try to catch some money counterfeiters in the act, but each time they rush in the baddies dump their plates into a vat of acid, destroying the evidence. Thus, Batman invents the Magnet Batarang, which he uses to snatch the plates through an open window. Batman places the Magnet Batarang onto the Batarang board in the Hall of Trophies (as referenced in Detective Comics #244).

–Batman #93 Part 1
The FBI enlists Batman and Robin to go undercover and join up with an expedition that is hiking to the peak of Gasherbrum II, better known as K4. Recently, a plane carrying important microfilm crashed there and the FBI wants Batman to retrieve it. Under fake names, Bruce and Dick join the expedition, which quickly deteriorates into a Murder Mystery Mountain Trek as fellow hikers begin getting killed one-by-one. Eventually, Batman and Robin retrieve the microfilm, plant Old Glory atop the summit, and catch the killer. What about the Abominable Snowman footprints that were spotted? I guess we’ll never know if the yeti truly exists.

Batman #93 Part 2

Batman #93 Part 2 by Bill Finger, Dick Sprang, & Charles Paris (1955)

–Batman #93 Part 2
Jane Wayne (wife of Bruce’s distant cousin Van) drops off her crying baby at Wayne Manor while she attends to her ill husband. Bruce, Dick, and Alfred have zero child-caring sense and treat the child as if it is a ten-headed alien monster. A flustered Batman and Robin milk a cow for the baby and then bolt out into the city to get away from the kid. While the Dynamic Duo busts some would-be helicopter bombers, Alfred is barely able to care for the baby back home. Eventually, Alfred threatens to quit unless Bruce or Dick sit for him. More hijinks ensue inside the Batcave as the baby runs amok. Batman busts some more criminals and then returns to amuse the baby. Jane finally returns for her kid, who nearly exposes Batman’s secret ID. As noted above, but worth repeating, we never actually learn the baby’s name as it is only called by its nickname “Junior.” But if later Earth-1 stories bear any true reflection to current Earth-2 stories, we can assume that Jane is a distant cousin that married into the Wayne family, meaning her husband is Bruce’s actual (unnamed) cousin. If Bruce’s actual cousin has a son that is a junior, presumably they share the same name. Thus, retroactively, we can assume that Bruce’s actual cousin is named Vanderveer “Van” Wanye Sr.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #108 Part 1. Batman sends the criminal known only as Garth to jail.

–FLASHBACK: From DC Super-Stars #17. August 1955. Bruce and Selina arrive at a church in a limo for their wedding.

Superman Family #211 Part 2

Superman Family #211 Part 2 by E Nelson Bridwell, Kurt Schaffenberger, Dan Adkins, & Adrienne Roy (1981)

–Superman Family #211 Part 2
August 1955. The wedding of Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle is held in Gotham. Dick Grayson is Bruce’s Best Man. Karl Kyle walks his sister down the aisle. Also in attendance: Alfred Beagle, James Gordon, Barbara Gordon, Tony Gordon, a recently rehabilitated Harvey Kent, his wife Gilda Kent, and Lois and Clark. During the lovely ceremony, Superman saves Harvey from an assassin and trails the villain to an apartment across town. There, Superman learns that the assassin was hired to kill Harvey by someone who was put away by Harvey when the latter was DA years ago. Superman drops both men off with the law and returns to the wedding. After the ceremony, Superman reveals his secret identity to Selina. (The wedding is also shown via flashback from Infinite Crisis #3.)

–FLASHBACK: From The Brave and The Bold #197. August 1955. Bruce and his new bride leave their wedding ceremony and presumably go on a much deserved honeymoon.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #103 Part 1. Late August 1955. Batman makes an appearance for Gotham’s annual “Batman Day.”

–FLASHBACK: From Batman #103 Part 1. Late August 1955. Judge Albert Hagen refuses to parole inmate Lefty Reed. Reed breaks jail and threatens to murder Hagen. At Hagen’s masquerade ball, Batman and Robin expose Reed and put him back in jail.

–Detective Comics #223
Bruce and Dick visit the newly opened Batman Dime Museum, a carny attraction that has a fake Batcave, which is run by a fake Batman and Robin. Later, a real estate agent shows up at Wayne Manor with an offer to purchase the property. Bruce denies him and sends him away. Batman and Robin trail him, but are distracted by a huge armored car theft by van-driving gangsters supposedly linked to Big Jim Jarrel. Upon spying on Jarrel’s home, Batman learns that Jarrel is trying to purchase Wayne Manor so he can use the supposed cavern beneath as his secret lair. Panicked, Bruce purchases the Batman Dime Museum, cleans it out, and replaces every false item with the real stuff from the Batcave. The Batcave is left completely empty! The Dynamic Duo then, inexplicably, open up for business, allowing men, women, and children to paw at and climb all over their stuff. Commissioner Gordon shows up and threatens to arrest Batman and Robin under the “impersonation law” unless they shut down their attraction. After some more casework, Batman learns of Jarrel’s plan to tunnel into the cavern. Alfred and Robin flood the Batcave, rendering it unusable. Batman and Robin then easily bust Jarrel when he breaks through his tunnel. Later, the Batcave is drained and dried and the heroes pack their stuff to move back into it while a crotchety Gordon berates the “fakers.”

–FLASHBACK: From Batman #95 Part 3. Batman and Robin, in the Batmobile, run some crooks off the road.

Batman #94 Part 1

Batman #94 Part 1 by Sheldon Moldoff & Charles Paris (1955)

–Batman #94 Part 1
Criminal mastermind John Marstin is clearly responsible for stealing and hiding some jewels, but the only evidence linking him to the crime has been destroyed. While Robin carries out the investigation, Batman uses a strange tactic against Marstin and his men: Straight-up intimidation using the Bat-symbol. That’s right, Batman begins projecting Bat-symbol shadow puppets near Marstin, placing stickers outside his home, and flying bat-shaped kites within his line of sight. At the opera premier of Die Fledermaus, Batman debuts his all black “Die Fledermaus costume” and frightens off Marstin’s men. Later, Batman and Robin debut their “bat-glider costumes”—hang-glider suits that make them appear like giant monster bats when viewed from below. A freaked-out Marstin cracks and gets busted.


–Batman #94 Part 3
Batman and Robin are called to investigate a mystery at Mr. Malcolm’s Sky Museum, home to dozens of antique planes, balloons, and zeppelins. However, when they arrive, the owner of the museum gets injured thanks to sabotage and winds up in a coma. After a detailed investigation, the Dynamic Duo learns that there are a bunch of wanted criminals afoot. Eventually, Batman exposes and busts Mr. Malcolm’s assistant, John Goss, who had been giving asylum to wanted fugitives in exchange for big money. A few days later, the Batplane flies with the antiques in the Sky Museum’s Gala Pageant Air Show.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #109 Part 3. Batman and Robin fight Verne Hainey’s gang for a third time, but Hainey escapes yet again.

tec 224

Detective Comics #224 by Bill Finger, Dick Sprang, & Charles Paris (1955)

–Detective Comics #224
Batman and Robin wear body-reinforcing steel cuirasses underneath their costumes in order to safely test some new features on the Batplane. While fighting some thieves, Batman’s glove gets torn, exposing the metal beneath. The crooks escape, but come to believe that Batman is a robot due to the metal arm. Batman decides the best course of action is to actually build a Robot Batman, likely modeled off of the temporary spare-parts Robot Batman he built less than a year ago (in Batman #86). Once Robot Batman 2.0, a remote controlled unit known as the “Batman-Machine,” is completed, Robin takes him out for a spin. The Boy Wonder, per Batman’s orders, purposefully allows the thief gang to abduct the Batman-Machine so that that Dynamic Duo can locate the villains’ secret hideout by following a tracer inside the Batman-Machine. But Batman’s plan backfires—the Batman-Machine is too powerful and becomes the ultimate tool for evil for the crooks. Batman fights the Batman-Machine, secretly takes it down, removes its mechanical innards, stuffs himself inside the hollow body, and returns to the thieves’ den. With the element of surprise, Batman takes down the baddies. Afterward, Batman puts the lifeless Batman-Machine into the Hall of Trophies.

–World’s Finest Comics #79
Carter Nichols sends Bruce and Dick to Baghdad in the year 955 CE to learn about a mystery surrounding a mythic “magnetic mountain.” Sure enough, the mountain is real—a magnetized meteorite on the outskirts of the city. However, the Dynamic Duo finds out the hard way that strong magnetic fields disrupt Nichols’ metahuman abilities and modern technology. Batman and Robin are stuck in the past! After failing to reach Batman and Robin (obviously), Nichols reaches out to Superman via Lois Lane. There is a scene where Clark says to Lois that he will “go find Superman.” Obviously, she knows he is Superman since they are married—Clark saying this out loud would merely be to keep up appearances in front of the rest of the Daily Star staff. In case you didn’t know, Golden Age Superman and Silver Age Superman were by-and-far the most powerful of the Supermen (as compared to later age models), not only having super speed, strength, flight abilities, heat vision, and x-ray vision, but also “tactile telekinesis.” Golden Age Superman also had the unique ability to break the chronal barrier and travel through time! Using this power, Superman blasts his way to 955 CE to search for his friends. Meanwhile, Batman, Robin, and Aladdin (of 1001 Arabian Nights fame) are arrested after being accused of being three of Ali Baba’s “Forty Thieves.” The Caliph orders the trio to perform a magick act, lest they be executed. Robin desperately rubs on a plain old oil lamp and Superman appears just in the nick of time to act as a “genii.” Aladdin’s rival, Abdullah (actually Ali Baba), takes the lamp and commands Superman to grant him several wishes, all of which Superman does, but with a Monkey’s Paw type of catch each time. Meanwhile, the Forty Thieves kidnap Robin, forcing a rescue by Superman and Batman. The Man of Steel then blasts back to the future with Batman and Robin in tow on a “flying carpet.” However, this last scene is retconned thanks to a reference in World’s Finest Comics #91, which alters Superman’s time-traveling abilities so that he cannot bring others with him while breaking the chonal-barrier. Thus, we must re-imagine the end of WFC #79 so that Nichols is able to bring Batman and Robin back.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #121 Part 3 and The Brave and The Bold #182. Batman invents the one-man Whirly-Bat copters. He also begins storing several collapsable versions in the trunk of the Batmobile. (The Whirly-Bat first appeared in Detective Comics #257. However, since ‘tec #257 is only canon on Earth-1 Part 3 of Batman #121 becomes the first official reference to the Whirly-Bat in the Golden Age.)

–FLASHBACK: From Batman #98 Part 3. Early November 1955—it’s hurricane season. When a big storm ravages Gotham, Batman and Robin buttress the Batmobile with steel sheets and take to the streets to provide aid to the beleaguered people. Batman uses the Batmobile to recharge an electric generator so that the hospital can operate.

–REFERENCE: In Batman #95 Part 2. Batman chases a bulletproof vest-wearing crook, who leaps into Gotham Bay and drowns due to the weight of the protective clothing. Batman puts the vest into the Hall of Trophies.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman #95 Part 2. Batman and Robin chase after “electric wizard” Wires Welken and his accomplices Slann, Wilden, and Bloss. Welken attempts to jump from rooftop to rooftop, but falls to his death. Batman puts Welken’s spool of electrical wire into the Hall of Trophies.

Batman #95 Part 1

Batman #95 Part 1 by Bill Finger, Sheldon Moldoff, & Charles Paris (1955)

–Batman #95 Part 1
When some escaped convicts hide out in a movie set warehouse, Batman and Robin chase them through various life size replicas of famous places from all across the globe. Before long, Batman and Robin get caught, no thanks to former actor Roger Stanton, who lives in the warehouse in seclusion and refuses to help the heroes. Eventually, the reclusive Stanton returns to form and dresses up as the leader of the crooks to rescue Batman and save the day.

–Batman #95 Part 2
For National Anti-Crime Week, Batman agrees to tour several cities by train. A Bat-Train is fixed up, complete with a “Museum of Justice” car that contains a bunch of items from the Hall of Trophies and holding cars for the Batmobile and Batplane. All along the tour, three criminals plague the Bat-Train in various attempts to rob something from the “Museum of Justice” car. Eventually, Batman catches them and finds that they are Wires Welken’s former accomplices, Slann, Wilden, and Bloss. Welken’s wire spool trophy contains a hidden recording that would function as the evidence needed to put the trio away for life. With the spool secure, Batman chugs his locomotive back to Gotham with the villains in tow.

–Batman #95 Part 3
After saving a wannabe daredevil who jumps off of a bridge, Batman and Robin meet folk recording artist Sam Strong, who has written the number one hit song in America: “The Ballad of Batman & Robin.” When Batman and Robin are tasked with protecting a million dollar live television broadcast from interfering racketeers, they fail in their task (momentarily) thanks to Strong, who croons about their every movements to an audience of Gothamites on the street. Later, the Dynamic Duo gets Strong to sing about false information, which fools the racketeers into walking right into a superhero trap.


–REFERENCE: In The Brave and The Bold #182. November 29, 1955. Batman and Robin retire the Batmobile and begin using a new model, albeit one that looks quite similar to the old one. Robin etches the date onto the frame of the retired vehicle.

–REFERENCE: In Detective Comics #229. Batman encounters crook Viney Hail.

Batman #96 Part 1

Batman #96 Part 1 by Bill Finger, Sheldon Moldoff, & Charles Paris (1955)

–Batman #96 Part 1
King Eric of Norania comes to Gotham to deliver a televised speech asking for a loan for his country. Because his crown jewels are so valued, Batman switches places with the king. While King Eric plays Batman and tags along with the Boy Wonder against felon Mayne Malan, Batman (in disguise as King Eric) has to go to Gotham’s Television City broadcasting center to deliver the speech, which he does to perfection. The Dark Knight then switches places with King Eric, who had previously been having a blast patrolling with Robin, in order to take down Malan for good.

–Batman #96 Part 3
Batman and Robin join forcers with new GCFD Chief Waller (who replaces Chief Brodie, Fire Chief for the past seventeen years) to promote Fire Prevention Week. Batman and Robin turn the Batmobile into a Bat-firetruck-mobile and begin work as full-time firefighters. After helping out at the Eastern Yacht Club, Batman comes to believe that a smuggling ring might be operating out of the establishment. Killing two birds with one stone, Batman aids the GCFD and busts some crooks at the same time.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman #106 Part 1. Batman and Robin confront crook Jim Varrel while he and his man attempt to rob a silk warehouse. Varrel looks like he’s going to defeat the Dynamic Duo, but they get help from a mystery man who shines a bright set of blinding stadium lights on Varrel, allowing the heroes to claim victory. SPOILER: The mystery man is none other than Varrel’s brother Fred Varrel. After the case wraps, Batman places the stadium lights in the Hall of Trophies. Before being sentenced, Jim Varrel vows to find out who the mystery helper is and kill him.

'tec #226

Detective Comics #226 by Edmond Hamilton, Dick Sprang, & Charles Paris (1955)

–Detective Comics #226
Batman receives a package in the mail at Wayne Manor from his old mentor Harvey Harris. The package contains the old Robin costume Bruce wore while training with Harris when he was a teen. Batman regales Robin about his training period with Harris, explaining that he wore the original Robin costume during that time. (Bruce recycled the costume design for Dick’s superhero togs.) A letter accompanying the package explains that Harris had deduced his young protégé was Bruce Wayne. Only in the event of Harris’ death, which has recently occurred, was the Robin costume and letter to be sent to Wayne Manor. NOTE: Writer Edmond Hamilton must not be well-versed in his Bat-history. He writes a version where Thomas and Martha aren’t gunned down by Joe Chill until Bruce is a teenager! Ignore.



  1. [1]COLLIN COLSHER: There is a flashback to the Brane Taylor tale from Batman #67, but it incorrectly places it in 1954 instead of 1951.
  2. [2]COLLIN COLSHER: World’s Finest Comics #76 originally took place here, but thanks to 1981 retcons, Clark and Lois are already married, hence the issue’s removal and move from the Earth-2 timeline to the Earth-1 timeline.
  3. [3]COLLIN COLSHER: World’s Finest Comics #77 originally took place here, but thanks to 1981 retcons, Clark and Lois are already married, hence the issue’s removal and move from the Earth-2 timeline to the Earth-1 timeline.
  4. [4]COLLIN COLSHER: World’s Finest Comics #78 originally took place here, but thanks to 1981 retcons, Clark and Lois are already married, hence the issue’s removal and move from the Earth-2 timeline to the Earth-1 timeline.
  5. [5]COLLIN COLSHER: Batman #94 Part 2 is non-canon on Earth-2 (and canon on Earth-1) because Bruce is referred to as a “playboy.” Bruce ain’t no playboy anymore. He’s happily married! From this point on (technically ever since his earlier engagement in The Brave and The Bold #197), whenever Bruce is referred to as a “playboy” (either via narration or by any character), the story in which the reference is made must be non canon on Earth-2 and canon on Earth-1. While no stories of this publication era will reference Bruce’s marriage to Selina (since it happened retroactively in the late 1970s), there are often instances where Bruce is referred to as a “socialite” instead of a “playboy.” This distinction is important because the former label of “socialite” can still be legitimate on Earth-2, whereas the latter cannot. Many stories going forward will continue to call Dick “Bruce Wayne’s young ward.” This might seem like a weird or dubious thing to call Dick, especially since he is now twenty-four years old, but for lack of a better descriptive term (and due to the fact that DC editorial was undoubtedly trying to keep the lineaments of their characters as youthful as possible for as long as possible), we’ll have to accept the “young ward” dialogue going forward.
  6. [6]COLLIN COLSHER: Detective Comics #225 is non-canon on Earth-2 (and canon on Earth-1) because Bruce is referred to as a “playboy.” Bruce is no playboy. He’s married!

6 Responses to Golden Year Seventeen

  1. James IV says:

    Just a quick question, since Bruce Wayne gets engaged to Selina at the end of Brave and the Bold #197, and later marries her in Superman Family #211, would any stories you’ve played in-between the two events that refer to Bruce as a ‘playboy’ still be canon in the Golden Age? It seems a fine line, and I was curious on your take.

    • I consider all “playboy” references or anything that refers to Bruce as being single after Brave and Bold #197 as being either non-canonical or needing to be moved earlier. He’s a dedicated one-woman man once he puts that engagement ring on it!

  2. Hey Collin – the Brave and the Bold #197 references that Batman recaptures Two-Face in the first half of 1955, in addition to the Joker and the Penguin, which have already been included above. However, the site lists Two-Face surrendering to the law in 1954. I don’t believe they give a specific date in Superman Family #211 that would indicate Harvey’s surrender wouldn’t be in 1955, and Bruce’s autobiography indicates that he did encounter Two-Face in 1955. I’m curious–is the note placed in 1954 because of the recovery time for Harvey’s reconstructive surgery? Based on some quick Googling, major facial reconstruction surgery could take 6 weeks to a few months to recover, but I wouldn’t doubt Harvey’s case would take significantly longer to heal and recover from, what with him losing half his face not once but twice now.

    Curious to hear your thoughts on this.

    • Hey Angus! Hope you are doing well. I think Two-Face’s defeat, plastic surgery, and return to normal life should happen in early 1955. I even have a footnote that says that. I think I just placed it in 1954 by accident, so I’m going to move it. Thanks for bringing this to my attention!

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